The United Nations emphasized last year that mental health care should be made available to everyone needing it. Looking at the increasing incidence of mental problems across the world, various countries are taking initiatives to deal with the issue.
And the United Kingdom is one such country which has taken the issue seriously. According to Prime Minister Theresa May, mental illness is an area in which power of the government can be used to improve people’s lives. Keeping this in mind, she is expected to pledge new government initiatives for schools and employers in the U.K. to abolish the stigma of mental health.
The prime minister will use the state to transform the way the issue of mental health is addressed in schools and at workplace. The initiative will see extra training to schools and a review of workplace practices to tackle mental issues that have been disregarded as a secondary issue to physical health in the U.K.
As part of the initiative, a task force will be constituted to review the status of mental health care at workplace. The review of workplace practices will be led by mental health campaigner Lord Stevenson of Coddenham and Paul Farmer, the chief executive of Mind, a mental health charity.
In the U.K., one in every four people suffers from a common mental disorder and the disease is estimated to cost the country around £105 billion (nearly $128 billion).
During her speech in London, May is expected to announce several measures, including offering mental health first aid training to secondary schools, a review of children and adolescent mental health services in the country led by the Care Quality Commission, new trials across the country to strengthen links between educational institutions and local NHS mental health staff, and expansion of online services to allow for symptom check prior to a face-to-face appointment.
In addition to using the state to tackle the mental health crisis, the initiative will also see an expansion of digital services, a review of the debt form system, a green paper supporting children and young people, and £15 million to provide places of safety or replacement to hospital visits, like community clinics, for people suffering from mental health disorders.
According to a research by the Education Policy Institute Independent Commission on Children and Young People’s Mental Health in November 2016, a quarter of young people seeking mental health care in the U.K. are turned away due to lack of resources. In addition to that, the waiting time for required treatment is also quite long.
Mental health crisis in U.S. and likely ACA repeal
In the United States, with the newly elected Donald Trump administration likely to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), or just ACA, Americans suffering from mental health and addiction disorders might get affected by the loss of their insurance coverage. According to the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), nearly 30 percent Americans with coverage through Medicaid suffer from a mental disorder or an addiction.
According to experts, even a partial ACA repeal could eliminate tax credits that help reduce the insurance premiums by about 85 percent. The partial repeal also stands a chance to scrap the expansion of Medicaid that provided insurance cover to millions of the lowest-income people in 31 American states.
While the 21st Cures Act is aimed at developing new treatment for chronic diseases, encouraging innovation in the medical field and improving access to mental health services, its advantages might be overshadowed by the repealing of the ACA that provides for increased access to mental health and substance use disorder services and health plans. Repealing the ACA might see millions of Americans out of insurance coverage.
Recovery and rehabilitation
If you know someone who is suffering from some kind of mental illness, it is time to seek professional support. Contact Sovereign Health to find our mental health rehabilitation centers in California. Call us at our 24/7 helpline 866-973-7164 or chat online with our experts for information on our top mental health facilities in California.